Today, John and I decided to get out of the house. I have been working on some ornaments over the past couple of days and John installed some sun shades yesterday for our patio. We really didn’t veg out too much yesterday so this morning we just sat outside and enjoyed our morning coffee. We try to leave the weekends open to just relax and, gasp! do absolutely nothing. After coffee and breakfast, we decided to get out of the house. We had no plan in mind until we drove past a new local coffee shop, just a few minutes from the house. After deciding to pop in to see if it was open yet, we were surprised to find that it was open! Apparently the shop is open every day from 7-1 every day and I was ecstatic because now we have two local shops to go to for coffee that are both in Jensen Beach and within biking distance.
After getting two iced coffees, we found a table in the shade. (Almost all the tables are under trees and in the shade, which is nice.) This shop is just across the road from the Indian River Lagoon, and beyond that, Hutchinson’s Island and the Atlantic Ocean. We couldn’t see any of the above because of all of the vegetation but we did enjoy the benefits of a lovely sea breeze.
I have been trying to get out of the studio and back in the habit of outdoor sketching so this seemed like a great opportunity for that. I love Bismarck palm trees with their blue green leaves, so I chose to do the one at the edge of the property, which had lights hanging from it. I pulled out a mechanical pencil and my trusty Lamy Safari sketched the scene. Then I added watercolor. I didn’t have a water container with me but I had water brushes. Unfortunately they chose today to make things difficult. The watercolors I used were a gift from a friend plus I also had use my mini palette, which has colors that I just can’t do without when painting anything green. The brushes were annoying but I managed to get by. (I’ll probably pull them apart after this to see why the water wasn’t flowing down to the brush from the barrel.)
This sketch is the end result of sitting outside drinking an iced coffee and dodging a rain sprinkle or two. It was a nice relaxing morning and John and I had a nice chat while I sketched.
I was the biggest skeptic of digital “art.” It seemed too easy to draw over photos. Every time I saw a digital portrait on Instagram, I passed because I thought it was too perfect. Then I joined the SKTCHY app on the iPhone and I saw more digital portraits. Some looked way to perfect, but others had that look where you can tell the artist did it by observing, not copying. I was still skeptical.
Then I saw the David Hockney exhibit at the Met. I walked into a room where there was a large Digital screen and on it were David Hockney’s paintings done on the iPad using Procreate. There is a feature where you can loop the drawing process and they were playing that on the screen. You can see the entire drawing and painting process. I was enthralled. Amazed. SMITTEN. I sat down on the floor not caring who was around me and I was in Heaven. WOW.
I walked out of there with a whole new appreciation of digital art and how it can actually BE art. You can use the iPad as a sketching tool. A tool to create cartoons and animation. I have even mimicked collage on the iPad. I follow a Hong Kong artist named Rob Sketcherman and I was impressed with his digital urban sketches. (Alas, I haven’t seen many posts from Rob lately, I hope he and his family are ok with Hong Kong’s issues.) I starting to use the iPad to urban sketch and I love playing with various features to see what happens. There’s always the “Undo” button if I don’t like something. I also like that I can pull a painting or sketch into Procreate and work from the original to create something new. I did that the other day with the Unicorn post.
Below is an example of an urban sketch (on location) that I did back at the end of June. I have been wanting to get out and sketch more but I have to adapt to the new world we have now.
Emmy has a coiled rope wrapped “boing” that we put her on outside. She’s in an screened enclosure so she’s safe from predators. When I go for my morning swim, Emmy talks, chirps, whistles and I mimic her as I am swimming. I sketched this the other day, after my swim.
Yes! That is correct! I counted snd recounted a few days ago. I waited for today’s kitty to celebrate! It’s only 2 days short of our village’s 125th anniversary so it couldn’t have been timed better. I chose the Brick House Brewery (BHB) for today’s sketch because they are in the oldest business building in Patchogue, they are one of the oldest breweries on Long Island and they are hosting the joint effort brew “Pop Fizz Clink,” brewed by BHB and Blue Point Brewery, to celebrate the 125th Anniversary of Patchogue.
Kitty strolled by on her way to see if she could hang out in the Hops Garden out back of BHB because pets are permitted, ok, dogs, but kitty thinks she’s a Chihuahua so that counts for her.
Sometimes people ask where I get my inspiration. I do some brainstorming and I jot down lots of ideas but they don’t always turn into anything. Then there are the ideas that are there, right in front of me.
This kitty is one of those spur of the moment ideas. John and I went to the beach this evening. I brought some premade kitties to embellish; I brought books and magazines, so I was prepared for whatever I felt like doing. I am currently reading “The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.” I try to make time for a bit of recreational reading and I was hoping to indulge in reading my book.
I was working on one of my premade kitties and I looked up and the lightbulb came on. At first, I didn’t pay the fishing rod much attention except to see if the guy it belonged to caught a fish. He wasn’t having much luck. I was finishing my kitty when I glanced up again and saw the beautiful sky behind it with the Belt of Venus so I whipped out my watercolors and a blank postcard and did this little sketch of kitty fishing.